In the latest issue:

In Quarantine

Erin Maglaque

Après Brexit

Ferdinand Mount

Short Cuts: Springtime for Donald

David Bromwich

Meetings with their Gods

Claire Hall

‘Generation Left’

William Davies

At the North Miami Museum: Alice Paalen Rahon

Mary Ann Caws

Buchan’s Banter

Christopher Tayler

‘American Dirt’

Christian Lorentzen

Fiction and the Age of Lies

Colin Burrow

In Lahore

Tariq Ali


James Lasdun

Rereading Bowen

Tessa Hadley

At the Corner House

Rosemary Hill

William Gibson

Thomas Jones

Poem: ‘Murph & Me’

August Kleinzahler

The Stud File

Kevin Brazil

John Boorman’s Quiet Ending

David Thomson

In Shanghai: The West Bund Museum

John-Paul Stonard

Diary: The Deborah Orr I Knew

Jenny Turner

RestorationStephen Wilson

You must have escaped in a hurry
dropping so many little intimacies
from our lives – thermal vests, long johns,
a lace camisole, a black bow-tie,
a packet of Tampax on the floor beside
the bed, my old tennis-shoes
(were your backs done in too?).

I picture your arrival, through the rockery,
sinking your feet into heather,
shrugging off rhododendron branches,
strands of honeysuckle; prising
open the sash with an iron bar,
your bodies folded like contortionists
among slivers of glass and wood.

Surgeons in a slapstick
operation, you don rubber gloves
still wet with Fairy foam,
and choose the right knife
for the job. You have turned
our house into a fading Caravaggio,

which the men from the Incident Room
lovingly restore. When the silvery powder
is brushed away, we can see
exactly what you fingered;
a textured print of small circles,
like suckers on an octopus tentacle,
softly formicate under our skin.

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